As the first month passes, I find myself more immersed in books and other things around, while blissfully neglecting the few urgent things that needs to get done. Why do I even bother to mention these things? Let me be happy for a while and jot down the books I’ve done reading so far in 2014:
1) 10-10-10 By Suzy Welch
2) Arranged Marriage by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
3) Thank You for Smoking by Christopher Buckley
4) Our Iceberg Is Melting by John Kotter and Holger Rathgeber ( Date: 7th Feb 2014)
5) The 5 Minute Researcher: Doing better research is steps away by Sammy Jarauvik ( 15 Feb 2014)
6) 99 Ways To Flood Your Website With Traffic by Jack Mitchell ( 15 Feb 2014)
7) The Difficulty of Being Good by Gurucharan Das( 27 Feb 2014)
8) The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg( 6th March 2014)
9) Why I failed by Shweta Punj ( 15th March 2014)
10) Losing My Religion by Vishwas Mudagal ( 17 Aug 2014)
11) The hard thing about hard things by Ben Horowitz ( 19 Aug 2014)
12) Meditations by marcus aurelius ( 21 Aug 2014)
13) The 4 Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz ( 22 Aug 2014)
14) Rework by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson ( 23 Aug 2014)
15) The Bad Boys of Bokaro Jail by Chetan Mahajan ( 24 Aug 2014)
16) The Test Of My Life by Yuvraj Singh, Sharda Ugra , Nishant Jeet Arora ( 26 Aug 2014)
My good friend Vijay has lended these books a few days before 2013 ended, and my reading saga started with finishing the first book on 1st Jan 2014. Few days have passed on since I finished the other two books too. Had a strange feeling reading hard cover books after very long. Ever since kindle has been a part of my life, hardly I’ve returned back to hard cover book reading, for the fear of losing it again when I relocate. Next on the list is The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga, let’s see when I manage to finish it.
Books 5 & 6 are short read. Few words about book #5. I did the mistake of buying it without reading it thoroughly – in all good intentions I wanted to research well. But, the book taught me on the “non-research” aspects of being a Ph.D researcher. One takeaway from the book – Even researchers need social skills. So, well – for others you know the reason now. I’ve highlighted few quotes from the book, which I plan to convert into picture quotes to serves as beautiful reminders of useful things.
For book #6 – What a disappointment!! Out of the 99 strategies mentioned, few I knew but for the most part of it – I wouldn’t rather use those strategies. I am a firm believer of building loyal readership, even though it’s less in number. One takeaway from the book – Now I know what kind of books not to buy. Anyone who promises me tips and tricks – all of you are off my list.
Book#7 – What a read!! I am glad I read it. Quickly managed to write a review on the blog, lest I forget in the sea of seemingly important un-important aspects of my life. Next on the list has to be a funny, light weighted book!
Book#8 – If you will read only ONE book in your entire lifetime, this is IT. Habits control us, and it’s like water to the fish, it’s there all the time and you just don’t realize them until you look around hard. Will post a detailed review soon.
Book#9 – Short, Refreshing read. The people covered in the book are really “high profile”, and it is indeed amazing that they can pinpoint why they failed. Nothing personally to take away, but it sure serves as a reminder that with great power, comes great responsibilities.
Book #10 : Breezy read. I am not high on reading fiction, i enjoyed reading this one. Cannot do justice by the review comparatively, but no harm in giving a read. Has enough twists and turns to keep the reader excited.
Book # 11 : What a read, What a read!! I finished this straight in couple of hours, while my parents nagged me to catch much needed sleep. Written by Ben, it talks more of the management aspects of a startup as it grows beyond the garage, and all the points made are hard. That’s why its the hard thing about hard things.
Book # 12 : This book is personal writings of Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius. The introduction serves the much needed purpose of explaining the Stoic philosophy, and the upbringing and influences on roman emperor so I was pretty much read the book through that lens. The oft repeated topics are Death, to do our duty without expectation and leading a good life. Have bookmarked a few quotes in kindle, will pen a separate blog post.
Book # 13 : Simple, powerful. There is nothing new the book tell us – but something which is incredibly difficult to follow in real life.The 4 Agreements – Impeccable to your word, Don’t take things personally, Don’t assume and always give your best are the perfect pathways to lasting inner peace. I seriously think of practicing them in real life, once done with the personal emergencies going on in life.
Book # 14 : Rework is a book by the founders of 37Signals. I have heard about 37Signals, but haven’t been following their blog. So, most of the book content is first time read for me. No BS, just plain talk. This book is 180 degree shift from the conventional way of doing business. Every topic offers just as controversial advise and is good to read. As with Book # 13, practicing these in your business requires you to transform your mindset even before you embark on the business journey. My best quote from the book – Don’t build a startup, build a business. Will revisit this when I embark on my own journey.
Book # 15 : When a seasoned corporate professional joins a troubled organization, and is sent to jail in bokaro where he goes for a 2-day visit for no fault of his own – the book is born. Written by the author to spend the time in the jail – it’s a first hand account of how jail feels like for someone who has only watched jails in movies ( and i hope the same stays true through out my life too). Easy read, and the best part is at the end, his learnings. One thing I did feel was the light heartedness associated with the book – I was expecting a much intense narration and personal account though.
Book # 16 : I picked up this book to kick start my habit of reading non fiction for this year. And what better choice than Yuvi’s tryst with cancer. I was assuming the book would be about cancer in entirety – but it spanned from his childhood right to the diagnosis, treatment and come back. Two things stayed with me – a) Greatness does not come with comforts, but with great discipline and pain b) When you did not question God for the good things ‘Why me?’, why should we question the same in dark times? The narration is personal in tone, and i finished the book one shot. Nnot being a cricket fan, finishing it in one go was possible only because of the content. The denial towards cancer is real, and yuvi does not hide it from his readers. Being a big and famous cricketer in India – it’s not easy to be so forthcoming about one’s life. Fan for life.